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The cost of school trips in independent schools

(154 Posts)
UkraineQueen Tue 14-May-19 10:10:44

I have just moved DS to an independent school, due to problems he was having at his old state secondary.

One of the things I am genuinely shocked at is how much cheaper the school trips are in the independent school. For example, a 3-day trip to Germany at his old school was going to cost £800. The trip to Paris at the new independent school will be £600 for 6 days. Both trips involved flights and a stay at 2 star hotel accommodation.

I am wondering now why school trips in state schools are so expensive, or is it just that our experiences aren't typical of the norm?

TeenTimesTwo Tue 14-May-19 10:15:04

I guess the first thing you have to check is whether the independent school subsidises the trips.
Then also whether full insurance is included.
But it may be that the flights were cheaper to Paris, or Germany is more expensive in general.

Our comp does its level best to make things as inexpensive as possible.

UkraineQueen Tue 14-May-19 10:19:44

Insurance is definitely included in the cost of the Paris trip at the independent school. No idea if the new school subsidises trips.

BallyHockeySticks Tue 14-May-19 10:19:52

Ours are going to France for a week for £700 - state school. The Germany trip does sound extremely expensive. Maybe they couldn't get decent price flights.

AvocadosBeforeMortgages Tue 14-May-19 10:20:20

Are the staff to student ratios the same? Is food included too? Any pricey activities at one but not the other?

OKBobble Tue 14-May-19 10:25:02

Maybe the indie has a higher uptake so they get better group discounts

UkraineQueen Tue 14-May-19 10:26:28

Not sure about staff ratios, so maybe that may account for difference in cost. Both Paris trip and Germany trip included some expensive day trips. Paris= Versailles and Eiffel Tower to name but a few. Germany included a visit to Dachau. However, I don't know how much overall the budget for activities would have been for both trips.

mrsm43s Tue 14-May-19 10:27:30

My experience is that school trips are about the same for private v. state school - having sent my 2 on a few European trips from indy, in general they sit around the £6-800 mark for around a week trip, so in line with your experiences.

Skiing trips are obviously more expensive, as are trips to more exotic locations.

I think there are more trips on offer at the Indy, though, and more children go on multiple trips. At state, many many children go on no trips at all, whereas at Indy most children go on most of the standard European trips.

UkraineQueen Tue 14-May-19 10:30:48

Food definitely included in both Germany and Paris trip. Not sure of how many going on each trip, so I suppose difference in price could be down to a larger group securing a better group discount.

MariaNovella Tue 14-May-19 10:33:31

The specialised tour operators which provide school trips for state schools have mostly been bought by Private Equity firms. Of course prices have gone through the roof.

Private schools have the resources internally to organize their own school trips and therefore control costs.

Pinkyyy Tue 14-May-19 10:34:07

I'm shocked they've booked a 2 star hotel, I wouldn't allow my DC to stay in one.

UkraineQueen Tue 14-May-19 10:34:07

Actually, I'm not sure whether overall uptake for trips at DS independent school would be that high compared to other indy schools. Most pupils at DSs new indy school are from abroad and are boarding. They go home to their families in school holidays instead of going on school trips.

MariaNovella Tue 14-May-19 10:34:47

I'm shocked they've booked a 2 star hotel, I wouldn't allow my DC to stay in one.

Two star doesn’t mean horrible.

UkraineQueen Tue 14-May-19 10:37:36

Nothing wrong with 2-star! I'm a big Premier Inn fan!

MariaNovella Tue 14-May-19 10:45:02

There are lots of small hotels in big cities that are charming and central but “only” have 2 stars because they have no lift, no TVs in the bedrooms etc.

TreacherousPissFlap Tue 14-May-19 10:50:02

Doesn't the higher cost mean state schools can subside for DC whose parents are struggling?
I may be entirely wrong but that's always been my understanding.

MariaNovella Tue 14-May-19 11:14:32

If only, treacherous. The money is going straight into the PE funds.

Always check who the tour operator is!

Hollowvictory Tue 14-May-19 11:19:11

It's not a like for like comparison is it? I'm guessing the flights to Germany must be more expensive depending on low cost carriers on the route etc.
I'm gue it's the destination making the cost difference not the type of school.

Hollowvictory Tue 14-May-19 11:19:56

Treacherous that's not correct.

MariaNovella Tue 14-May-19 11:21:17

Please read what I have written as it does explain the cost difference and I am very shocked by the way PE firms exploit state education.

KindergartenKop Tue 14-May-19 13:28:19

Versailles is free for under 24s I think!

RosaWaiting Tue 14-May-19 13:32:01

Pinkyyy "I'm shocked they've booked a 2 star hotel, I wouldn't allow my DC to stay in one."

why not?

Hollowvictory Tue 14-May-19 13:41:56

Op premier inns are not starred.

Pinkyyy Tue 14-May-19 13:49:09

@RosaWaiting Because they must be 2 star for a reason and I wouldn't send them to stay somewhere that I wouldn't stay myself. I don't think Premier Inns are 2 star, but I wouldn't go on holiday in one of those either. They're fine for a night away somewhere, but definitely not for a holiday

BallyHockeySticks Tue 14-May-19 14:06:13

Pinkyyy which aspects of 3* does your child need - access until 11pm or room service perhaps? Stars largely come down to tick boxes of services provided. They are not hygiene ratings.

Which guide to hotel ratings

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